I woke up early again. Left the apartment at 6:30. I wanted to have good sun this morning for photos in Burano. Took sometime to find the right boat, but it was worth it.
Author Archives: drpopp
Can’t get enough of Venice.
After my food coma yesterday I was looking for deep fried zucchini blossoms. I saw a place that had them but couldn’t find them. It was going to rain again so I found a table outside under an awning and sat there for awhile watching people and the rain. It seems to rain for a few minutes and then stop. I had a little snack. Local Cod three ways.
I woke up early and went for a long walk, it was a beautiful clear, coolish morning. Very few people get up early and not many places are open. I finally found a place for some coffee.
I got in line for seeing the Basilica again. I was about 45 minutes early which worked out to be perfect. The lines were very long after that. It is such a beautiful place. It has been revised by fire and flood since the 450’s. Apparently St Mark’s body was brought there from Egypt. The floors of the main part are rippled by floods. Last time I was here it was closed due to floods and days after I was visiting it was two feet under water.
Somebody said take a lot of pictures….
As soon as I made the flight arrangements I made reservations at Osterialletestiere. I have eaten here a few times. Never forget to confirm your reservations. It’s Michelin rated!!
Back to the apartment for a food coma induced nap and a rapid Covid test. I am negative
Wednesday in Venice
Ugg another long post lost so I begin again.
The days really blur sometimes. Yesterday after seeing the fish market and wandering about, I spent a lot of the day reading, and sleeping. The bread and pasta was killing me. I guess the Italians are importing our crappy bleached out flour. I was reading a book called Constant Change about a dental lab. I know, exciting stuff.
I left apartment around 5 pm. Rain was threatening. Jennie had told me the storm was quite violent by her. I didn’t want to get stopped by my new friends but sure enough Mickey was just outside. He manages two restaurants, one on either side of my apartment. He asked my to have a Prosecco but I politely refused and said maybe I would stop by later. The poor guy is smitten. I am not the type to want to be indebted to anyone or be the expectant American waiting for something free.
As I wandered around some more, I happened into another Irish Pub. I had been there before. It wasn’t so much that I wanted to eat here but just to get my bearings. I ordered an Aperol Spritz and read my book and watched the Olympic’s. The rain stopped so it was my chance to find the right place to eat. I couldn’t eat any more bread! I ended up at a small place called La Serenissima. With my white wine I had some Bresaola and frito misto. Bresaola￼ is like carpaccio. I asked for some pesto. I could smell it from the kitchen, but received some mayonnaise. I paid my bill and they served me the requisite Lemoncello.
Then back to the San Marcos Square for more photos. I’ll always remember the orchestras playing on either side of the square, competing with each other. Crowds of people would flock to one side then the other, depending on the song.
Then I walked to Harry’s Bar. Years ago I planned to meet some friends there one day at 4 pm. They were coming form England. We were late. As I was walking fast to get to Harry’s, someone jumped me, it was my firmed. We had the famous Bellinis at Harry’s.
I am obsessed with the shoes!
Back to the apartment and slipped by my friends.
Tuesday in Venice
I did not sleep well but did get a lot of reading done. I got up early and walked to the Rialto fish market. Years ago, my daughter and I stayed for a week in a flat and went the market and we bought the ugliest fish we could find and cooked it up. Some was good some not! I love fresh markets. It was a little rainy so I ducked into a cafe for a cappuccino and a sandwich.
Natalie and I spent five hours here once, watching people and drinking some Italian beer
Venice….my favorite city
Jennie and the girls graciously dropped me off at the train station. Ironically they were on the way to the dentist. I easily purchased a ticket to Venice. The trip was going to take about 45 minutes. I had brought some things for the girls so I was down to a back pack and a shopping bag. Rain was threatening and I knew that I would be walking so no roller bag over the bridges. It was hot!!
I have been to Venice a few times so I thought I knew the way, but I got a little detoured, but landed at an Irish Pub. I was to meet the Airbnb person at three. Devils Forest Pub is an establishment! Internet for a map and Aperol Spritz to cool off. ￼
The best part of Venice is just wandering around and getting lost. There are way more tourists than residents. I met the guy a few minutes later and he took me to the apartment. It’s bright and spacious.
There is a restaurant below so the sounds and smells of the outdoor cafe can be heard. It’s nice.
After settling in I went down the three stories, opened the door and stepped outside the building, into the alley and the host of the restaurant next door invited me in for a Prosecco. He was so friendly that I accepted. I was busy reading as I do and someone else asked if I wanted another glass. He was the manager. Neither spoke much English, but tried. I tried to. I have studied a little Italian over the years but I always revert back to Spanish. We had a few laughs. I was on my way to explore!
I love this square. St Marks
I meandered around a bit, found a quiet outdoor restaurant next to the canal and had a quick drink in the rain and more reading. Beautiful views.
So I go back to my room for a quick shower and when I come down to go to dinner , my new friends invite back in the restaurant. Restaurante Centrale Pizzeria. Micky, the manager wanted to take me to dinner but I refused, but I let him buy me dinner at the bar. Amazing spaghetti con vongole, more Prosecco and a white and finally some limoncello. And the bread! Yummy
Said arrivederchi to my new friends and went upstairs.
With the Giauque Girls…
I need to find a new blog venue. This one has become so complicated.
My oldest nephew’s wife and their darling girls picked me up from the airport on Sunday. Not sure what to do so we headed to a winery for a little wine tasting and a snack. Such beautiful country side. It was a perfect, hot summer day. Then we drove to their house for a jet-lagged nap for me. They live in the country in a cute house, right next to a stable with lots of farm animals. A new donkey was born the next day and I think they named it Aunt Bobby, which is what they call me. My nephew Mark started calling me Bobby when he first started saying Mommy and Daddy, done 30 years ago.
The girls were excited to show me their cool loft room and dolls and stuffed animals. We ordered pizza and watched a movie. The girls are so sweet and loving. Jennie is a great Mom. I don’t know how military families do it. Mark, my nephew is in Oklahoma training for a couple of months.
On Sunday we slept in and then decided to see some caves nearby. Again beautiful scenery and hot weather. The caves felt good. The explanation of the mountain and the caves made the lush area all make sense. The rock is very porous and absorbs a lot of water. The caves were below the city of Asiago, as in the cheese.
After the caves we drove to the city where Grappa originated. We had some lunch and a very short tour the the Grappa museum with a grappa tasting. Most grappa that I have had is not to my liking but there two flavored grappas were good.
Later that day we went to the city of Vicenza. Jennie knows her way around quite well. It’s so hard to find parking, but she has the parking lots in her phone so that helped. We walked around a bit, had some Aperol Spritzers and Orangina soda for the girls. So fun the people watch and dog watch.
It was lovely to spend time with these three girls. And sad to leave on Monday.
The Flight over…
It’s busy, everyone has masks on. The few days before the flight were nerve racking. Do I need to show the vax card and get a Covid test? Just some simple statements would have been helpful. I booked on Expedia but you had to fill out forms for each airline and upload your passport and vax card. But this could only be done 48 hours in advance. If you make a mistake, you star all over.
Thank goodness some of the bars and restaurants were open. They weren’t in earlier months and when they were open, so many rules..sat down to a lively conversation of two people, older American woman and a younger Kiwi. They were discussing her love life so loudly that I almost moved. The person next me and I giggled. When the woman left, he starts grilling me. After answering a few annoying questions, I told him I had to work on my blog. He stayed uncomfortably close. When I left I told the bartender thanks for now saving me!
On to the plane. I switched from a aisle to a window and had the whole row to my self. Tried to read, tried to watch a couple moves but just ate and went to sleep. Looks like our flight is arriving late…
Finally a trip to Europe
Venice here I come! A few weeks ago I was planning to go to Wisconsin to visit my Mom, friends and possibly organize my high school class reunion. It was expensive. The same day I received a postcard from my nephew and his niece who are living just outside of Venice. My nephew, Mark is stationed there in the Army. So when I looked up the possibility of traveling to Venice, I impulsively booked it! Then I felt guilty and booked a very quick trip to Wisconsin for my Mother’s birthday. Saw my best friend since age 15, Julie. Had a great dinner with Mom at a very cool supper club in Pipe, Wisconsin. Pipe is so small it’s unincorporated. The supper club sat about 40 people. You want to get there at about 4:30. You sign up with one of the daughters and go to the bar and wait. Dice games are happening. Mostly shake of the day. I ordered an Old Fashioned, sometimes called Old Fashion. It was perfect except for the cherries. I hate those dyed red ones. After a bit a server brings the menu and you order from her. When the table is ready, you are invited to be seated. Immediately a fritter arrives, unless you know to ask for it to be served after dinner. We did. My Mom is a regular. A fritter can be many things, this one was kind of a deep fried rosette donut with powdered sugar on it. It’s probably a German thing. We had an amazing, Wisconsin dinner including soup, salad, bread basket, calamari appetizer and fresh lake perch! I love this place. An Restauranteur would be impressed with the efficiency and the food. Next my Mom and I stopped off to see my Father at a tiny cemetery in Jericho Wisconsin. We buried him there in October of 2009. My parents had a bench designed as their gravestone with their picture on it, their parents names and their kids. It’s pretty cool. I have relatives from my Dads side buried there. The church was built by my Great Grandfather on my Moms side. There are farms bordering it and there used to be cows next door. The next day I saw my college friends after a memorable bowl of Real Chili!!
So now off to Venice for just 6 nights. Two with my nephew’s wife and their kids, then four nights in one of my favorite cities, Venice. I have reservations at my fav restaurant. Time to fly!